10 Tips To Stay Healthy While Traveling
Every year, my closest university girlfriends and I go on what we call a ‘biddie trip’ to somewhere amazing for the May long weekend. Past trips include Vegas, Miami and Key West. While I’m not going to delve into the details of these trips, because what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas, I will tell you that over the years I have learned how to properly prep for trips to ensure that I have some gluten free (& healthy) food with me! In fact, I tend to be ridiculed by the girls for the massive Tupperware that accompanies me. Case in point with this seriously ancient pic! 😉
Anyway, I recently received a question from a friend from university who has recently started traveling more and more for work so wanted some tips to stay healthy. I hear from a number of people that when they travel their digestion gets seriously messed up, not to mention they come back bloated and feeling heavy.
SO, here are some tips that I always do to help you manage!
1. Prep ahead of time
The day before you leave, make a large batch of something, so that you have it for the airport. Here are meals I’ve made in the past:
- The Ultimate Quinoa Salad
- Breakfast On The Go
- Gooey Chocolate Protein Cookies
- Spaghetti Squash + Meat Sauce
2. Order a fridge in your hotel room
Yes, this might be an extra cost, however I usually find it’s worth it because it can save you a meal or two out if you can save some food that you’ve brought.
3. Bring bars
I’m not normally a ‘bar’ person, as you know from here, however there is a time and place for HEALTHY ones. Here are some healthy ones to pack with you:
4. Research restaurants ahead of time
First of all, Yelp is amazing and I’ve started using it ALL the time. You can search keywords like “vegan” or “gluten free” and not only does it search the restaurant’s description for those words, but also people’s reviews.
While I am definitely not vegan, I find it great to search for vegan restaurants, because they tend to offer tons of fresh vegetable based dishes, meaning you can make sure you get a healthy meal in.
Secondly, be the one to plan your meals out. I always plan our dinners out with friends when we go away, mostly because I care the most where we go. That way, I have always made sure they have something I can eat!
5. Pack magnesium
Magnesium powder, my favourite being Natural Calm, is a great way to keep things regular while you travel. It’s a natural laxative, but not the “EEK I NEED TO RUN TO THE BATHROOM” kind. 😉 Take 2-3 tsp before bed in water.
6. Bring individual protein powder packs
Chances are you can’t pack a tub of protein powder with you, but most of the big protein companies, especially Vega, make individual packets that you can pack with you. You can mix these with either some almond milk or just water and have it to sustain you as a snack, or with breakfast for an added protein kick to balance your blood sugar.
7. Stay hydrated
Flying can be super dehydrating, and dehydration can cause constipation, so make sure to drink at least 3L of water on a travel day! I always bring my glass water bottle everywhere with me.
8. Plan your food for return trip
You won’t have the luxury of having a home cooked meal for the return trip, but you can still have packed something healthy so you avoid the airport food. Once you’ve found your go-to healthy place via Yelp, grab an extra meal before you leave so that you have something healthy (and delicious) for the trip home!
9. Bring an immersion blender
A more extreme suggestion, I know, but this is actually an option. When I went away this summer, the AirBnb place we stayed actually had an immersion blender, so I picked up some berries and spinach and I could make a smoothie (with my individual protein powder pack) in the mornings which was awesome!
10. Speak up at restaurants
Lastly, I encourage you to speak up both with your friends and at the restaurant to explain why you would like to choose a certain restaurant or why eating at ___ restaurant doesn’t work for you. 99% of the time, as long as you choose somewhere else that is delicious, people won’t mind at all, and will be happy to not have to be the one to go to the effort of choosing a restaurant.
BONUS: Use melatonin, with a time change
If your travels take you across different timezones, this is a useful one for the first night on the new time zone. Bring some melatonin (from the health food store) and take either a 1/2 tablet (1.5mg) or a full one (3mg). I find that melatonin can make me groggy the next day, so definitely start with a lower dosage.